Organize your mail in Apple Mail

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Easily organize the mails that have arrived in the Mail program on the Mac. To do this, use the ‘Smart mailbox’ function or create a rule.


Apple Mail is a handy program to receive and send e-mails. It is installed by default on all Apple computers. There are several ways to put emails in the new mailbox in Mail. A convenient way is to drag the message to the desired mailbox. But it’s even easier on a Mac with macOS 10.12 Sierra or later: with a smart mailbox. All e-mails that meet certain criteria are then automatically placed in this mailbox.

  • Open Mail.
  • Select the message you want to put in the smart mailbox.
  • click on PO Boxes, if this overview is not shown on the left.
  • Mouse over the text ‘Smart mailboxes’. Click on the plus sign.
  • Give the smart mailbox a name.
  • Choose one or more conditions that the emails must meet in order to be delivered to the smart mailbox. By default, this condition is set to the sender of the selected message.
  • click on OK.

From now on, all e-mails that meet the chosen conditions will end up in the smart mailbox. The Smart Mailbox appears in the sidebar, under the “Smart Mailboxes” heading. However convenient, smart mailboxes also have a disadvantage: the original mail remains visible in your Inbox. If you really want to move the emails, use a rule. It automatically moves your messages to a mailbox. This way you can be sure that your inbox is always in order.

  • Create a mailbox as described above.
  • Select the message you want to move.
  • click on Mail > Preferences.
  • click on Lines.
  • click on Add rule.
  • Give the rule a name in the ‘Description’ field.
  • Choose one or more conditions that the emails must meet in order to be moved. By default, this condition is set to the sender of the selected message.
  • In the menu at the bottom right, choose the mailbox where the message should be moved.
  • click on OK.

All e-mails that meet the selected conditions will now arrive in the desired mailbox.

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